Just about a week away from free agency and teams around the league have been given permission to talk to upcoming unrestricted free agents. One free agent that the Vancouver Canucks have been linked to is winger Gustav Nyquist.
I believe the #Canucks have expressed interest in F Gustav Nyquist in the UFA Interview period.
— Rick Dhaliwal (@DhaliwalSports) June 24, 2019
Nyquist spent his whole career with the Detroit Red Wings organization, before getting traded to the San Jose Sharks before the trade deadline last season for what seemed like a fair, but underwhelming, package of draft picks.
Picked up to provide some offensive depth on a cup-hopeful Sharks team, Nyquist did just that. In the 21 playoff games he played in, Nyquist contributed 11 points while averaging slightly over 15 minutes per game. Exactly what is expected out of a rental pick-up.
He will be 30 years old when the Canucks start the 2019-20 regular season, but Nyquist has been a consistent contributor since playing his first real NHL season at the age of 24.
Nyquist was never a star in Detroit, but always relied on and a complimentary piece next to Red Wings legend Henrik Zetterberg for multiple seasons. He is coming off a career-high total in points, spreading his 81 regular season games between Detroit and San Jose, but he has been a steady play driver throughout his entire career.
He has never been a sub-50 per cent player when it comes to shot attempt percentage, averaging a 53.1 CF% at 5v5 in his career and just finished his season with a 53.7 CF%.
For what to expect from Nyquist, the Canucks might be scarred by signing aging Swedish wingers, but the upcoming free agent is different. Evolving Wild and their contract projections has Nyquist’s new deal projected as a six-year deal in the $5.6-million AAV range — something the Canucks can fit under their cap with no problem, but the term length might be of concern.
If the Canucks would be able to shorten the term, to four years for example, and raise the cap hit in turn, then it would be favourable for Vancouver.
A decent price to pay for a guaranteed lock in their top-six forward group during the length of his contract. Especially for a winger that can drive the play in his favour and has historically through his entire career.
Including the addition of J.T. Miller of the draft weekend, the young Canucks forward group might have a significant upgrade in terms of support heading into next season.